Too many private groups made this a cruise to forget

Independence of the Seas Cruise Review to Caribbean - Eastern

Experience: 2-3 cruises
Reviews: 2
Helpful Votes: 20

Overall Rating:

2 out of 5
Verified Review
7 Night Eastern Caribbean (Ft. Lauderdale Roundtrip)
Sail Date: October 25, 2015
Ship: Independence of the Seas
Cabin Type: Inside
Cabin Number: 8673
Traveled As: Couple
Reviewed: 2 years ago

I was very excited to go on our Caribbean Cruise on Independence of the Seas. The reviews for the ship had me expecting a fun-filled cruise with lots of entertainment and activity. It was not our first cruise, but it was or first with Royal Caribbean. While I enjoyed the amenities like a movie screen in front of the pool and 7 hot tubs on the pool deck - the lack of available service because of the ship catering to so many different private groups was more than frustrating. We constantly had to hunt down service for things from drinks, to activities, to even getting our food and drink refills at dinner in the main dining room. In our past cruising experience, I've never had these issues, I've always felt catered to on my vacation. 


The other big issue on this cruise was lack of entertainment. Everyday the lounges were primarily closed with "Private Functions", even going so far as to not have a show one night in the main theater. I understand that there is probably a huge benefit to booking private groups on the ship, but for the first time on a cruise, I felt bored.


Royal Caribbean really dropped the ball on overall customer service. I'm sure the private groups had a great time, but I'm doubtful I'll return, hot tubs or not. 

Food and Dining

5 out of 5

Onboard Activities

3 out of 5
There wasn't much to do - there was an afternoon activity on the pool every afternoon which was fun.


3 out of 5
Entertainment options were extremely limited due to private functions being held in the lounges. There was even a night without a show.

Service and Staff

1 out of 5
Staff was just not around. There were hardly any servers at the pool during the day and the wait staff during meals was inattentive or had overbooked sections.

Ship Quality

5 out of 5

Cabin / Stateroom

3 out of 5
I could hear things going on from every direction, I won't book joined rooms again (we weren't with the other group). Overall the room was nice and a good size.
1 out of 5
Not much to do around the port hotels and very limited dining options for what can be delivered.
3 out of 5
We landed later in the day and there wasn't anything to do/open shops when we returned from our excursion.
5 out of 5
If you do the volcano hike - keep in mind when they say extremely strenuous, it really is. 30 people started and 12 actually made it to the top (3 hour hike up, 2 hour hike down)
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